How to Paint Your Christmas Tree a Different Color Tutorial

December 7, 2012Allison Murray

How to Paint Your Christmas Tree a Different ColorI have had a white Christmas tree ever since I bought this house in 2004 or 2005 or whenever the heck it was. I loved my white tree because it wasn’t exactly the norm back then. Apparently I have a thing about liking things that are “different” and disliking things that are “popular”.

Out of nowhere, I decided I wanted a black tree. I went around town and the only one I found was one of those weird, tall and skinny jobbies and I didn’t like it at all. Instead I bought 5 cans of cheap spray paint and headed home to start my project. It was getting dark, was terribly windy and was the coldest day we’d had so far this year. Oh, and of course I had a cold. If you haven’t noticed a theme before, I can be a freakin’ genius.

When it got dark I resigned that I was done for the day and was disappointed to only have gotten up through the bottom portion complete. Waking up bright and early the next morning I saw a very, very big problem. My paint isn’t coating nearly as well as I had thought it had in the dark.

Long story short, this project took 16 cans of paint and two additonal trips into town to purchase it. Oh, and by the by, the Walmart about 2 miles from where I went tree shopping had almost my exact tree from years past that I was busting hum over for $45… except in black and prelit. I may sound dejected, but I love my tree all the same and, hey, I saved $29!

First thing to note… this is a long project. Second thing… you’re not going to get perfect coverage. If your tree is white underneath it’s going to have white come through when the limbs are roughed up a bit.

For this project you will need:

  • Artificial Christmas tree
  • TON of spray paint (I used 16 for 6 feet of tree – used the cheapie $1 stuff)
  • Christmas twinkle lights
  • Paint brush
  • Acrylic paint matching spray paint.

How to Paint Your Christmas Tree a Different Color

First things first, spray paint your pole and base.

How to Paint Your Christmas Tree a Different Color

Now I tried out about a gazillion different methods and this is what seemed to cover the best and quickest. Take each piece of tree and give it a good fluff and then a decent spray trying to cover as much as possible.

How to Paint Your Christmas Tree a Different Color

Next put the limb into its slot on the tree’s pole and continue painting doing one of those crazy 360 around it to see if you’ve missed anything. Continue until you have the tree completely painted. Walk away and come back another day. Check around to see if there are any humongous spots you missed and correct.

I’d HIGHLY advise leaving this fella’ outside for at least a week because that is apparently how long it takes for the migraine fumes to dissipate from 16 cans of spray paint.

How to Paint Your Christmas Tree a Different Color

Next you’ll need to make wires of twinkle lights to match your tree. I used black acrylic Martha Stewart paint and a decent brush on clear lights with white wires and would knock out a strand an hour. First plug in your lights to make sure that they work because if they didn’t after all of that work, that would suck. Do your best to cover the plastic light socket thingies but I didn’t worry about getting all the way up the the bulb and with the lights on you can’t tell anyway.

Oh, and just in case you were wondering, this tree did initially have a standard fake tree base. On Sunday I decided it was time to trim this sucker up right. Then I flipped the switch and decided that it was time to repaint my dining room from lavendar to gray.

I shoved the tree to the middle of the room and got to painting. While I was in my manic episode of a total lack of control my baby cat Liddy ran, jumped and hugged the tree and it went down with her. I heard a slight crack but set it back up, scolded her and got back to painting. She repeated this again and finally broke the sucker totally.

I was informed me that there was a time before tree stands I was lucky that said informant was happy to run to the creek to get me a bucket of sand. I have to say, it is crazy sturdy and Liddy can now hug that tree for all she’s worth. That sucker ain’t movin!

Doll that baby up and get excited about the totally new look that only cost you 16 bucks, or thereabouts, in paint!

How to Paint Your Christmas Tree a Different Color

Comments (7)

  • Stephanie

    December 23, 2013 at 12:56 PM

    God 16 cans! I wanted to paint my little white tree white, because I have had it since about 15 years and is now a yellow shade of white. Would you say the texture is nice?

    1. Allison

      January 10, 2014 at 11:25 AM

      So sorry to be responding so late. Darn spam folder! The original tree the pieces were kind of slick but the new, painted tree is more textured or a little rough. To be honest it’s a bit weird but since I don’t touch it much I wasn’t too worried. A satin or semigloss would probably produce a nicer texture.

  • Pablo (admin de

    December 1, 2015 at 12:37 PM

    Painting the tree doesn’t make it flammable? I am trying to do the same but afraid something bad might happen. My tree doesn’t have any fiber or LED, just the regular lights. Thanks for your article.

    1. Allison Murray

      December 1, 2015 at 6:09 PM

      To be honest I think trees are pretty flammable anyway, but the paint should not add to that in any way. Just be sure that your tree is good and dry before you string your lights. It would probably be best anyway to also get rid of the awful spray paint fumes :) Best of luck!

  • linda

    December 9, 2016 at 10:27 PM

    i want to spray a real pine tree black. what do i need to do first?

    1. Allison Murray

      December 12, 2016 at 1:08 PM

      In all honesty spraying trees can be a bear. I’d forgo the spray paint and pick up a cheap paint sprayer. You’ll spend as much, if not more on spray paint and this way you can go over the tree from a bazillion angles as much as you need to.

  • ANGELa

    November 5, 2017 at 7:37 PM

    I want to paint my tree white haha…go figure

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